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Sunni hardliner declared winner in Pakistan election dispute

The head of a group banned by the Pakistani government as a terrorist organisation has won a seat in parliament following an election tribunal's decision, officials said Thursday. Maulana Ahmad Ludhianvi, who leads the sectarian Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ), won an appeal after losing the seat at Jhang in Punjab, Pakistan's most populous province, during last May's general election.

Bus bombing kills 22 pilgrims in southwest Pakistan

At least 22 Shiite pilgrims returning from Iran were killed and 20 others wounded when a bomb hit a bus in the southwest Pakistan province of Baluchistan Tuesday, officials said. The attack took place at Dringhar village on the Pakistan-Iran highway some 60 kilometres (37 miles) west of Quetta, Baluchistan's capital. "At least 22 people were killed and 20 others were wounded," local government official Shafqat Shahwani told AFP.

Gunmen kill Shiite scholar in Pakistan

Gunmen killed a Shiite Muslim scholar and wounded two other people in the latest sectarian attack to hit Pakistan, police said on Monday. Allama Nasir Abbas from Islam's minority branch was killed late Sunday in Lahore, the capital of Punjab province, after addressing a religious gathering, police said, adding that the attackers managed to flee. "Two attackers on motorcycle opened fire on his vehicle. Primarily it was an incident of targeted killing," senior police official Rana Abdul Jabbar told reporters.

Pakistani Shi'ite cleric shot dead in reprisal attack

By Syed Raza Hassan ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - A prominent Pakistani Shi'ite Muslim cleric has been shot dead in an apparent reprisal attack following the murder this month of a Sunni Muslim leader, police said on Monday. Sectarian violence has been on the rise in Pakistan, adding to the list of concerns for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at a time when security forces are already stretched fighting an escalating Taliban insurgency in the northwest of the country.

Ten more dead in Bangladesh as PM issues warning

Ten more people were killed in Bangladesh Sunday after the execution of a top Islamist leader sparked riots and other protests, as the prime minister warned of a crackdown on the violence. Police said they opened fire after Islamist supporters torched houses and fought street battles with officers during a third day of unrest over the hanging of Abdul Quader Molla for mass murder during the 1971 war of independence.

Eight more dead in Bangladesh as PM issues warning

Eight more deaths were reported in Bangladesh Sunday in intensified riots and protests sparked by the execution of a top Islamist leader, as the prime minister warned of a crackdown on the violence. Police said Islamist supporters torched houses and fought running street battles with officers in towns and cities during a third day of unrest over the execution of Abdul Quader Molla for war crimes.

Six killed in clashes after Bangladesh Islamist hanging

Six people were killed in Bangladesh including three protesters who were shot dead by police on Saturday as Islamists vented their fury at the execution of one of their leaders for war crimes. The deadly clashes erupted two days after the government hanged senior leader of the Jamaat-e-Islami party, Abdul Quader Molla, for war crimes -- the first person to be executed for his role in the country's bloody 1971 war of independence from Pakistan.

Twin bombs kill 5 in Pakistan's Karachi

Twin bomb explosions killed at least five people and injured 18 others in Pakistan's port city of Karachi on Friday, police said. The two blasts took place within minutes of each other in the city's bustling, predominantly Shiite neighbourhood of Ancholi. "The improvised explosive devices were planted on two motorbikes, which went off with a big bang, killing five people and injuring 18 others," senior local police official Javed Odho told AFP. He said it was difficult to say immediately whether Shiites were the target because Sunnis also lived near the blast site.

Gunmen kill five Sunnis in southern Pakistan

Gunmen in Pakistan's financial metropolis Karachi shot dead five Sunni Muslims a day after six minority Shiites were killed in the same city, officials said. Police said the five belonged to the conservative Deobandi movement and were either members of sympathisers of banned extremist outfits. "Apparently they were targeted becurse of their sect," senior police officer Muneer Shaikh told AFP. The shootings took place in different areas of Karachi, Shaikh said, but declined to comment on whether they were revenge killings following the murders of the Shiites on Monday.

Sectarian violence kills at least 10 in Pakistan

Clashes between Shiite and Sunni groups in central Pakistan left at least 10 people dead and six others wounded on Friday after gunfire erupted during a rally, police said. The violence broke out when a protest march organised by Sunni radical group Ahl-e-Sunnat Waljamaat reached a Shiite neighbourhood in the Bhakar district of central Punjab province. Sectarian violence between Pakistan's Sunni Muslim majority and Shiite minority is rare in Punjab province, though other parts of the country are plagued by near-daily occurences.
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